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Middleton makes all-star team

Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton was selected as an NBA All-Star reserve Thursday night.

Middleton becomes the Bucks’ second all-star, joining Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Bucks guard Eric Bledsoe did not make the team, although he could possibly be added later because Indiana’s Victor Oloadipo will be unable to play because of a season-ending knee injury.

Middleton is averaging 17.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game as the Bucks enter Thursday night’s contest at Toronto with the NBA’s best record at 36-13.

The Bucks are looking to add to their status tonight with the game at Toronto. The Raptors are right behind the Bucks at 38-15. A Bucks victory would give them the season-series tie-breaker against the Raptors by winning the season series, 3-1. A loss puts the Bucks a game behind the Raptors in the East and deadlocks the season series.

Toronto guard Kyle Lowrie also found out before tonight’s game that he has made the Eastern Conference all-star reserves. He joins teammate Kawhi Leonard, who was voted in as a starter last week.

Middleton is the Bucks’ second-leading scorer. He came to the Bucks in the summer of 2013 as part of the Brandon Jennings trade. The Bucks acquired point guard Brandon Knight in the deal, along with Middleton and Viacheslav Kravtsov. At the time, the major parts of the trade were Jennings and Knight. One report on the trade referred to Middleton as one of “two other players” in the trade.

Instead, he continued to develop as a reliable scorer, whose quick release allows him to get his shot off. His long-range accuracy makes him a threat behind the arc, and he has gotten better every season at driving to the hoop.

Middlton played a significant amount at shooting guard in his early years with the Bucks, but with Bledsoe and Malcolm Brogdon manning the guard positions, he’s settled in at small forward. His length and wingspan make him a strong defender.

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